As we celebrate National Women’s History Month, we remember all the Christian women who made a difference. These were women of courage and foresight who marched against the traditions of their culture in order to follow their Lord. But who were some of these women?
We have, of course, the biblical histories of Mary and Martha, friends of Jesus who provided a place where he could rest. Legend tells us Martha was a wealthy widow and the homeowner who provided for her brother, Lazarus, and her sister, Mary.
Martha organized the work, supervised her servants and – as scripture implies – used her type A personality to get things done. We need the Martha’s of our world just as much as we need the Mary’s.
Other biblical women who exercised leadership and earned their way to biblical commendation include Lydia, Priscilla, Deborah, Abigail, Rahab, Jael, Mary Magdalene, Suzanna, Junia, Ruth, Joanna and of course, Mary – the mother of Jesus.
But what of the women beyond these biblical characters?
Many Christian women of history are listed as martyrs, those ladies who gave their all for the love of their Lord. Some of these noble warriors included Blandina (177 AD) from France, Perpetua and Felicitas (203AD), Faltonia (4th century AD) and Anne Askew (1546) an English Protestant martyr. Many others may not be recorded here, but they are definitely written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Tim Lambert has compiled a history of Christian women. Many historical women were noted missionaries who brought other people groups to Christ. To become a missionary in those days meant extreme hardship. These women truly left father, mother and homeland for the sake of the Gospel (Mark 10:29).
Some of these brave women include:
- Ann Lee (1736-1784: a Quaker missionary)
- Ann Judson (1789-1826: missionary to Burma)
- Lottie Moon (1840-1912: missionary to China)
- Mary Slessor (1848-1915: missionary to Africa)
- Ida Scudder (1870-1960: missionary to India)
- Evelyn Brand (1879-1974: missionary to India)
- Gladys Aylward (1903-1970: missionary to China)
- Elisabeth Elliott and Rachel Saint who helped reach the hearts of the Auca Indians in the 1950’s-60’s.
Other women have served in public service and government. Read about their accomplishments.
At GateWay of Hope, we see the courage and commitment of women every day. These are women who aren’t afraid to tackle some of the issues of their pasts and work with our counselors to find hope, healing and wholeness. They dig deep into their souls to find the places of first hurts. It takes a tremendous amount of personal courage to share how they have been shamed and to reach for the hand of hope that is offered them.
We applaud these courageous women.
Other women commit to coaching sessions and initiate plans for moving forward in life. They meet with our life coach to organize their lives, learn more about their core values and jump over the obstacles that once held them back. In spite of emotional upheavals, they stay in character – strong, living within their core values and moving forward. We admire these women of character.
Women in our groups dare to become vulnerable as they learn about authenticity and share their struggles. They find safety at GateWay whether they’re praying for their adult children, finding their place of significance within the pain of chronic illness or dealing with a spouse who is a sex addict.
These women of GateWay protect their hearts and fight against bitterness. They set healthy boundaries and learn better ways to deal with relationship conflicts. They use the giftings God has given them and refuse to be shamed just because they are women or because they have suffered the struggles of life’s circumstances.
During National Women’s History Month, we salute these brave women of the past who left a legacy of faithfulness. As their sisters, we step forward to serve God in whatever field He leads us to – for the glory of the One who created us to be His courageous women.
©2016 GateWay of Hope – Hope, Healing and Wholeness for Women